Grinding wheat with kids
I was floored when my then 6 year-old couldn’t get enough of grinding wheat. By hand. See I’d promised myself I was going to start using the stores of wheat that I’ve been saving up as much as possible in my everyday baking. I’ll admit, sometimes I do better at this than others.
I have a friend who goes through bags of wheat and uses an electronic Bosch grinder to make flour for bread. Her wheat bread is absolute perfection. But I wasn’t ready to commit to grinding all of my wheat (or springing for the pricey Bosch grinder). I wanted something that was easy to stash away and easy to use–no electricity required. After talking to friends, I settled on the Back to Basics Hand Mill. It was much less cumbersome then the tabletop mill I remember my mother having when I was a kid.
The hand mill was actually fun to use. In some ways it reminded my of using a pasta maker. You secure the mill on the side of a counter top, adjust the level of coarseness and start cranking. My kids got the hang of it immediately and offered to keep grinding even after I had plenty of wheat flour for the muffins I was making. Well, scratch that–my youngest thought it was fun, but my middle daughter got bored pretty quickly with it.
Since we started using it about a year ago we don’t break out our hand mill as often as I’d like, but we always have fun with it when we do. Also, despite adjusting the courseness levels several times, I could never get it as fine as the wheat flour you buy from the store (or my friend’s electronically milled variety). My solution was to mix half and half my hand-milled flour with my store-bought variety.
Even if you’re not ready to crank our your own wheat flour, check in on Wednesday when I’ll be passing along my favorite 100% whole wheat chocolate chip cookie recipe.
Your turn, have you tried grinding your own wheat?